datacentre End User

photos from the surreal world of a CTO

Monty Python has nothing on thisThe smartphoneanonymous guest at Stapleford Park Hotel revolution continues. Probably the biggest single game changer has been  the incorporation of the digital camera. We all have memories  of photos taken during major world events, the Arab spring, the London riots and no doubt the coming London Olympics.

the two alternative forms of transport at the Stapleford Park HotelPhotos of the mundane can be just as interesting and unexpected. I offer here some shots from an average week at the Timico coal face. I’ve omitted some of the more exciting pics because wanted to give you a real feel for day to day work at a business ISP.back on the Monty Python theme

I’ve left out any shot containing the datacentre or the 24×7 NOC because these have so much coverage of late that I have a feeling people want to see other aspects of the job.

The Little Drummer Boy grows upAlso there is no point here in mentioning the fact that we won an ITSPA Award because I did that in this post and Vint Cerf is covered here.

So there you go. It isn’t a glamorous life but somebody has to tread that mill. The hotel, Stapleford Park, might want to get an expert in to sort out the damp that is clearly visible on that drum.

I don’t always get to stay at this type of hotel – sometimes they are fully booked  and I end up staying at the Kings Cross Travelodge as I did last night. There is a story behind that which  I will share with you next week1but you can picture the scene – living like a duke one day and being woken up by incessant noise of tube trains and the beep of reversing lorries the next. I’ll also be posting about some of the content of the #Timico2012 customer conference. V interesting stuff from Cisco, and O2 in particular.

That’s all folks.

1 I know, I know I’m such a tease.

Business fun stuff

Neil tweets #Timico2012

Stapleford Park Hotel - should be on everyone's to do listSometimes you just need a bit of downtime. Timico Marketing Director Neil Armstrong tweets #Timico2012Ever wondered what I do for downtime? Eh? No? I’m going to tell you anyway. I like to chill on the terrace of Stapleford Park Hotel. Club sandwich maybe and perhaps a bottle of Hildon lightly sparkling mineral water. I like to sit out face up to that stranger the new spring sun and soak up its warmth.

There is no rush. Occasionally I take in a frame of snooker and then saunter down to the pool for a wallow – nothing too strenuous. The heat in the steam room acts like a deep massage andon my way to a century break relaxing on the lounger afterwards I drop in and out of a gentle sleep.

Back in my room I pick out my outfit for the evening and head to the bar to join some other guests for a pre- dinner glass of champagne. The meal that follows  in the Grinling Gibbons restaurant is superb, the wines fine and the brandy in the bar afterwards, nursed whilst sunk into a deep armchair, the perfect ending to a wonderful day.

What’s it all about? Follow #Timico2012 tomorrow.


Cloud End User fun stuff

2 days til Santa comes yay

Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue Concert Band play for the good folks in Waitrose in Lincoln

big wheel outside the Liverpool Echo Arena before last night of Paul McCartney tourThis is undoubtedly one of my favourite times of the year. When you are a believer like me the run up to Christmas Eve is very exciting. I start going to bed early and being a good boy so that there can be no question in Santa’s mind that he should be making that important stop in Lincoln.

Paul McCartney at the Liverpool Echo Arena for the last night of his tour - stunning concert as usualThe mince pie, carrot and brandy get put out before I go to bed and it always amazes me how Santa can get down what must still be a red hot chimney after that fire has been going all evening. The next day he and the reindeer have always scoffed the lot. Every year, without fail.

Timico management team at black tie dinner in private room at Stapleford Park hotelThe run up to the big days is always busy and this year has been no exception. This week has been a particularly good one with a trip to see Paul McCartney at the last night of his tour in the Liverpool Echo Arena.
Eleanor Turner - internationally renowned harpist entertains at the Timico management dinner

Stapleford Park in Leicestershire - qualityWe also had the annual Timico management bash, this time at Stapleford Park.

Stapleford, if you have never been, is a stunningly luxurious country house hotel in Leicestershire – former seat of some duke or other and surrounded by Capability Brown landscapes.I chat with Eleanor Turner who is listening politely to my drivel

You know what it’s like, champagne, cocktails, port, brandy, that kind of stuff. We’d do it more often if it was up to me.

We were lucky enough to be entertained by top international harpist Eleanor Turner who lives locally. Brilliant stuff though the team needs to stick to managing a business because carol singing accompanied by a harp is not their strong point.

The pic on the right is of me wowing Eleanor with my witty and erudite after dinner conversation.

It’s been another great year in business and on the blog. In fact it’s been a great year all round. To all friends out there have a wonderful Christmas break and I look forward to engaging with you anew in a slightly toned down January – life can’t keep going at the same pace when you get to my age you know!

I will be working between Christmas and New year – data centres to launch, world records to smash etc – so keep your eye open for news. Your help is required. 🙂

Archived Business

Timico conference wrap up

I’d just like to thank all who came to the Timico conference at Stapleford Park in Leicestershire on Wednesday.  This is an annual event that we hold to get closer to our customers and to brief them on up and coming technologies and products.

We crammed 120 or so guests into the Grand Hall at the hotel and had a mix of both internal and external speakers.  I would particularly like to thank Dennis Turner, Chief Economist at HSBC bank,  Nigel Scott, Director of Customer Engagement at BT and  David Hiscock, Director of Product Management of the Nortel Carrier business for their valuable contribution and insights on the day.

Dennis Turner in particular made a bold prediction that he recession would end and lo and behold I woke up this morning to the BBC news telling me it had done so!  What  foresight!  I’m thinking I might even change banks to HSBC – provided they can agree to my suitably large overdraft requirements  🙂

Stapleford Park, luxury country house hotel and scene of the Timico 2009 customer conference
Stapleford Park, luxury country house hotel and scene of the Timico 2009 customer conference

Footnote: Friday’s news regarding the recession is somewhat more sombre – in fact the economy shrank by 0.4% over the last quarter.  Perhaps I’ll stick with my existing bank!

Business internet

Timico conference twitter feed live from Stapleford Park

I’ve removed the live feed because the conference is over and I can only have one twitter stream – I need it for other uses.

You can check out what was in it by searching twitter for #Timico.